Did you know that making sloe gin includes a minimum of 2 months maturing time? That means that if you want some homemade sloe gin to serve at Christmas, you’re going to have to start the process within the next month! From today (13th September ’18) there are exactly 14 weeks and 5 days until the big day, giving you plenty of time to mix and mature your homemade gin.
What Is Sloe Gin Made Of?
Sloe gin is flavoured by sloe berries, which are ripe for picking in autumn. They can be found on blackthorn bushes, which is a common plant that is found over most of the UK, but be careful whilst foraging, as these bushes do have quite sharp thorns! You can tell if sloe berries are ripe if they pop easily between your finger and thumb. This year should be a good year for sloe berry harvests, as we have had a hot summer and some wet weather which is beneficial to sloe berries’ growth.
When sloe berries are infused with gin and left to mature to create sloe gin, the end result is a tart, yet sweet, liqueur that still retains the botanical taste that makes pure gin taste so good.
How To Make Sloe Gin At Home
All you need for making sloe gin at home is:
- Sloe berries
- Plain gin
- Caster sugar
The process is super simple. You simply take your freshly picked slow berries and give them a rinse to rid them of any dirt or grime that is lingering. Pat them dry using a tea towel or kitchen towel, then prick them with a sharp knife or fork to start releasing the juice. Place the sloe berries into a large bottle or jar, then add your plain gin and caster sugar. Seal the container tightly, then give it a good shake to mix up the ingredients. You will need to find a dark and cool place, such as a cupboard, to store your sloe gin mixture and allow it to mature for 2-3 months. You will need to shake up the container every day for the first week in order to release all of the flavour from the berries.
When the sloe gin is ready to drink, you will need to strain the mixture through a muslin cloth and sieve to make sure that you end up with a smooth drink. That’s all it takes! Just 3 ingredients, 1 container and a little bit of patience, and you’ve got yourself a tasty, fruity liqueur. There’s a great sloe gin recipe on the BBC Good Food website if you need any further guidance.
Sloe Gin Bottles
Here at Ideon, we’ve got a fantastic range of glass bottles that are ideal for storing your Sloe Gin in. Polo Bottles have heavy set bases and come with the option of adding a cork stopper cap, screw cap or pourer cap if required, the compatibility of which depends upon the size of Polo Bottle you have selected. Our Polo Bottles are available in 4 different sizes: 250ml, 350ml, 500ml and 750ml.
The cork stopper caps give these bottles an old-fashioned look, which perfectly suits sloe gin as the beverage has been brewed since the 17th century! The cork stoppers are only compatible with the 250ml, 350ml and 700ml bottles, whereas the 500ml bottle has a different neck width so is compatible with the screw caps and pourer caps. Pourer caps offer a more controlled way of dispensing spirits such as gin, as it has a clear plastic insert within that restricts the amount of liquid that can flow through.